There are so many smart home products on the market; tech companies or small startups make many, but who knows who you can trust? Lutron has been making quality lighting accessories since the 1950s, and they’ve become a highly-regarded name in the lighting industry. With the Caséta Wireless series, I’ve finally found a smart home brand I can trust.
Lutron’s Caséta series of wireless switches and accessories are some of the most fully-featured switches on the market. You don’t need super expensive “smart bulbs,” and you can retrofit your home’s lighting in only 15 minutes per switch. The beauty is that the Caséta switches are smart themselves and can connect wirelessly to the Caséta Smart Bridge, which connects them to the internet as well as Lutron’s Caséta mobile phone app.
The Caséta Smart Bridge connects to your home’s router via ethernet, which is good because it doesn’t rely on Wi-Fi, which can be spotty. The Smart Bridge unlocks the full potential of Caséta, allowing it to connect to smart home hubs such as Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, Apple Homekit, and more. Each Smart Bridge supports up to 75 Lutron devices and communicates with each device using the patented Clear Connect technology, which doesn’t use Wi-Fi and, therefore, will not bog down your wireless network.
We installed the Caséta by Lutron In-Wall Smart Dimmer Switch in our bedroom, and we love the high tech yet classic look of the switch. My wife loves the fact that it comes with a tiny pico remote that she can keep on her bedside table, and I love the fact that I can ask Alexa to turn off the lights in the bedroom. The switch is simple to use and intuitive to learn. Our kids figured it out on their own, so it won’t be difficult for guests to use either.
The In-Wall Smart Dimmer Switch took about 15 minutes to install, including the time it took for me to run up and down the stairs to turn the circuit breaker on and off. It was as simple as replacing a standard light switch. The In-Wall Smart Dimmer Switches can dim lights and works with dimmable LED and CFL bulbs as well as incandescent and halogen bulbs. That’s the beauty of the Caséta system; it’ll likely work with any bulbs you have installed in your house right now.
They also make specialty switches that control ceiling fans, lamp dimmers, smart dimmers for low voltage lighting, as well as a simple on/off switch for lamps or fans. The great thing about this system is that it includes enough options that you can outfit your entire house within the same ecosystem. All light switches come in either white, ivory, light almond, or black.
The Lutron app allows you to access your light switches remotely. You can view their status, turn the on and off, as well as set schedules and “scenes.” You can even set it up so that your lights turn on when you arrive home, which is based on your phone’s location. We didn’t have much use for the app itself, given that we were simply controlling our bedroom lights, but there’s a lot more you can do with the Caséta smart switches than just control them via Alexa or Google Assistant.
My biggest complaint with the Caséta Wireless system is that because the Smart Bridge connects via ethernet cable, I had a hard time getting it set up due to my home theater setup. My router is in our home theater room, and all of the power outlets were already used, so I had to figure out how to perfectly locate the Smart Bridge to get both ethernet and power to it. My situation is relatively unique, and most people won’t have this issue, but I felt I should raise it if this resonates with you.
Otherwise, we’ve had no real issues with the Caséta by Lutron light switch or Smart Bridge. We’re huge fans of the Caséta by Lutron smart lighting system and would recommend it to anyone looking to upgrade an existing lighting system to be smart/connected. We love the fact that we can turn the lights on and off using Alexa for those lazy nights where we can’t pull ourselves out of bed to turn the lights off.
The Caséta Smart Dimmer switch with wallplate and pico remote retails for $64.95, and the Caséta Smart Bridge retails for $79.95. You can purchase them from Amazon as well as your local hardware store.
Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample
What I Like: Easy to install; No need for expensive smart bulbs; Works with almost any home; Compatible with voice assistants like Alexa, Google Assistant, or Siri
What Needs Improvement: I’d personally prefer that the Smart Bridge be Wi-Fi connected, but I understand it’s a feature, not a bug